“No cameras at the press briefing, no problem!”
The White House has not held an on-camera daily press briefing since June 29, and Sarah Sanders, the deputy press secretary, is scheduled to again take questions off-camera on Wednesday afternoon.
Spicer told CBN’s David Brody and Jenna Browder, co-hosts of new online political talk show “Faith Nation,” that there are several factors going into the decision of whether to brief on-camera.
For instance, Spicer suggested White House officials stay off-camera on days, such as Wednesday, when Trump is participating in public events. The reason, he said, is because it’s “much more important to have the president’s voice carry the day.”
Of course, Spicer offered that explanation Wednesday in an on-camera setting, albeit a less combative one than inside the White House briefing room.
During the interview, Browder mentioned how “the mainstream media ... want to talk about Russia all day long.” She then asked Spicer, “What is the story that a lot of people are missing?”
At its conclusion, Brody told Spicer a lot of viewers “want to know how they can pray for you.”
The recent shift to off-camera briefings has rankled reporters in recent weeks. National Press Club President Jeff Ballou tweeted Wednesday that “keeping press briefings off-camera is a disservice to taxpayers who want full access.”
The White House’s decision to scale back on-camera briefings comes as Trump has not held a solo news conference in five months and primarily does interviews with sympathetic hosts on Fox News.
However, Trump also recently appeared on CBN for an on-camera interview with longtime “700 Club” host Pat Robertson, who has suggested the president’s critics are serving Satan.
Not surprisingly, Robertson didn’t grill Trump on Russia during last week’s interview and also told him there are “thousands of people praying for you and holding you up all the time.”